The Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board (TNPCB) has urged Pongal revellers not to burn tyres, tubes and plastics. Officials of the Corporation’s health wing have asked the public to not burn tyres and other harmful materials.
On Bhogi, people in villages light bonfire with logs of wood, cow-dung cakes, other solid fuels and wooden furniture that were no longer useful. In cities, however, bonfires are made with old tyres and tubes, plastics, old mats, broomstick, garbage and other harmful material, thereby increasing the levels of pollutants such as “PM 2.5 , PM 10 , SO 2 and NO 2” in the atmosphere, TNPCB said in a press release.
Airport Authority of India (AAI) has issued an advisory requesting the people staying in the proximity of Chennai Airport to not burn waste materials which create thick smoke during ‘Bhogi’ celebrations.
In a statement, AAI said, “In 2018, the airfield was covered with thick smoke emanating from the bonfire reducing visibility at Chennai Airport which in turn lead to diversions/cancellations/ delays of flights, much to the inconvenience of passengers. Nearly 73 departures and 45 arrivals were affected.
However, during 2019 Bhogi, through intense sensitisation among public and communities around Chennai Airport, we could minimise the effect of the bonfire, leading to fewer disruptions in air traffic
This time around, as a precautionary measure and to avoid any flight disruptions, we sincerely request public staying in the proximity of airport not to burn waste materials which create thick smoke during Bhogi.”